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October 24, 2016
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Admirer of Hitler and MPs who insult refugees now on Slovak legislature's Human Rights and Minorities Committee

26.3.2016 17:45
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The first session of the newly-elected National Council of the Republic of Slovakia has been used to decide the composition of its various committees. The nominations to the Human Rights and National Minorities Committee have sparked exceptional agitation in the Slovak media.

MPs are now sitting on that committee who have captured the attention of the Slovak public with their insulting, vulgar remarks about minorities and refugees and with their unconcealed admiration for totalitarian ideologies. One of the surprises of the recent elections in Slovakia was the success of the ultra-nationalist "Kotebla-People's Party Our Slovakia" (K-LSNS), which won 8 % of the votes and 11 of the 150 seats on the National Council.

The practical consequences of the electoral success of extremist and populist groups is now beginning to be felt in the first steps of the newly-elected legislature. Some of the nominations to the Human Rights and National Minorities Committee seem absurd.

In the Slovak media the name of newly-elected MP Milan Mazurek, the youngest member of the legislature, is now being mentioned in that context. Mazurek's remarks on social networking sites, where, for example, he has characterized the Holocaust as nothing but a hoax, are currently being investigated by police.

He also reached part of the Slovak electorate by glorifying Hitler and by giving vulgar speeches against Muslims or the residents of marginalized settlements. The 22-year-old is also a racist, violent thug and was one of the aggressors who vulgarly shouted at an Arab family and their children last year who were being protected by police officers when extremists began throwing rocks at them after a demonstration against immigrants in Bratislava.

Other nominees to the committee are MP Mária Janíková (SMER), who seeks ideological inspiration from Belarus, or MP Ĺubomír Želiezka (SMER), who has been convicted of brutally assaulting a senior citizen. Another member of the committee will be Martina Šimkovičová, who was fired by TV Markíza for making false statements about refugees in her online social networking status updates, or Anna Verešová, who is against the LGBT community.

The head of the Human Rights Committee is Erika Jurinová of the "Ordinary People and Independent Personalities" party (OLNL), who in the past has been a signatory to calls against abortion and artificial insemination. The speaker of the National Council has said the parties bear sole responsibility for nominating members to the committee, and the Slovakia media are saying the nominations are exposing the country to ridicule and shame. 

adg, translated by Gwendolyn Albert
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